The internet is currently split into two groups: those who are desperately awaiting the 2019 League of Legends Worlds theme, and those wondering why anyone would care about a song made for a gaming event. For anyone leaning toward the latter category, don’t fret, you shall soon understand.
Over recent years, the yearly LoL Worlds theme has grown to be nearly as anticipated as the event itself. A powerful, inspiring track featuring famous artists, paired with beautiful imagery, rallies millions of fans around the event. The theme is akin to the Super Bowl halftime show in quality and excitement.
Artist: Imagine Dragons
Here we are, don’t turn away now
We are the warriors that built this town
Youtube Views: 228,853,591
In 2014, Imagine Dragons provided Warriors, an upbeat rock track for the League of Legends World Championships. Along with the rising popularity of Imagine Dragons, fans of the game were finally granted a prominent piece of mainstream media that was made for them, about their passion. The lyrics speak to the community as a whole, reminding everyone that they had a part in building the game to its current level, and anyone can rise to greatness. The video made for it is more a series of scenes rather than a cohesive story line, spotlighting the highs of victory and the lows of defeat felt by every player.
2015: Worlds Collide
Artist: Nicki Taylor
Only one will take it all
Can we bring to fall the giants
Can we make the final call?
Youtube Views: 24,788,370 (Original)
Worlds Collide was an incredibly fitting title to represent an event that brings all regions of the world together. Initially released without a real video (which makes the YouTube views a bit more impressive) Riot later released a video for the Finals using the song. Focusing on the players and teams from that year’s tournament, the mix of live shots and animations combine seamlessly to get the fans’ hearts racing. Showing all paths converging on Berlin for the finals, it ends with a rendering of the two final teams entering the stadium, where SKT T1 would take the Summoners Cup.
Just like the blood running through your veins
There’s only two options win or die
Youtube Views: 70,875,076
Ignite is a techno inspired track that ebbs and flows similarly to a game of League. Riot took a deep dive into the history of professional League of Legends with the video for this one. Though the heavily stylized animation has enough action and excitement for anyone to enjoy, those with a knowledge of professional play will definitely get more out of it. The scenes featured show interpretations of some of the most famous plays in the game at the time, melded with the players who made them happen. This served as a reward to the more dedicated fans, who were eager to note all the references.
2017: Legends Never Die
Artist: Against the Current
Legends never die
When the world is calling you
Can you hear them screaming out your name?
Youtube Views: 86,388,807
Legends Never Die once again brings inspiring, League related lyrics that garnered many repeat views and/or listens from fans. This time, the video focused on the characters Garen, Ashe and Lee Sin. Delving into the lore of the game a bit, it followed each of their paths as they overcame setbacks in their training to become great warriors, famous throughout the world of the game. The parallel that can be drawn from this to the players consistently practicing to be better at the game is clear.
It should also be noted that when this song was performed at the finals, it was an epic production complete with an army of performers, a giant Summoners Cup and an augmented reality Dragon that seemed to fly around the stadium before landing on stage.
Artist: The Glitch Mob, Mako and The World Alive
It’s deep in your blood, go and take it
This is your moment, take to the skies, go
Youtube Views: 150,212,561
Last year, the bar was set incredibly high. The song is amazing of course, but the video really put it a cut above the rest. It follows the journey of Kang “Ambition” Chan-yong through the 2017 Worlds tournament, where he and the rest of Samsung Galaxy ran through some of the best players in the world to capture the Summoners Cup. He battles Luka “Perkz” Perković, Jian “Uzi” Zi-Hao and Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok himself, taking the form of some of his favorite champions as they each transform into theirs.
The video is filled with dozens of background references to teams, champions and the game itself, causing fans to watch over and over to see what else they can catch. Attempting to follow this heaps even more anticipation on the long awaited 2019 theme.
This year’s song is coming. Riot has heard the massive demand for the Worlds Theme, and has assured fans that it is admittedly later than they had wanted, but it will be here. The expectations are understandably quite high, and each day that fans wait only increases them. Riot has never failed before in delivering a great Worlds theme, and this year should be no different.